hope college > dining services   

Dining Home >
Menus >


Locations >
Meal Plans >
Special Diets >
Nutrition Info >
Sack Lunches >
Catering >
Comments >
Meet Our Team >
Sustainable Hope


Dining Services Special Events





Letter from the Director

Bob Van Heukelom, Director of Dining Services

We at Hope College Dining Services strive daily to provide the best possible experience for our students, guests and alumni. Our staff is continually seeking new products, methods, tools and training which allows us to offer a residential dining, retail and catering program like no other. You will be treated with respect and integrity. We will listen to your needs and find ways to meet them. To that end, we will do our very best to remain exceptional in our field and integrated with all of the other departments on campus.

The following are examples of how we do this:

  • Each month we visit a different residence hall to ask questions about how we can improve our program. As an incentive for student participation, we bring along pizza and Pepsi products to give away.
  • Students can e-mail questions and concerns to any manager and expect a response and appropriate solution if needed.
  • Students and guests can fill out a comment card anytime, online and the appropriate manager will write a response and reply and post if needed.
  • Many improvements to our program have come from student comments and requests. Our vegetarian student advisory board has made recipe recommendations, tested them and integrated them into production. Our vegetarian program has vastly improved since students have been involved.
  • Our Food Production Manager and Executive Chef are both well versed in many of the increasing food allergies. We work closely with students who have special dietary needs to provide them with what they need. Most of these students know our staff on a first name basis because we work with them on a daily basis and they become a part of our family.
  • We know that as a student advances in their college experience, life gets busy. We offer many flexible opportunities to help them receive a good value for their meal plan. This may take the form of preparing a customized sack meal to take with them to a job or internship, or it may be allowing them to use their meal plan in the retail operation at night. There are programs in place to accommodate these students yet each case is handled separately.
    • In addition to offering a wide variety of food on any given day, we also accommodate personal requests at several of our display cooking stations and at our Decker’s Deli!
  • We purchase high quality ingredients for our recipes. We use low fat and low sodium ingredients where practical. If we do use oil in the cooking process, we use olive oil or Zero Trans fat soy based cooking oil.
  • Our staff participates in many professional development training opportunities such as the national Serve Safe sanitation certification, trend seminars, leadership classes and new product testing.

In addition to residential dining, we have a dynamic retail program. The Kletz snack shop is a favorite of students, faculty and staff. Many students who commute to campus during the day and also those residential students who are looking for a late night snack love to come to the Kletz. If it happens to be an evening or a Saturday when an athletic event is taking place on campus, we offer a great concession option there as well.

When people in the greater Holland community speak of Hope College Dining Services, it is probably because we have catered an event for them. In addition to offering all of the college support that you would expect from us, we do a significant amount of catering in the community. I would encourage you to check out the many services we offer on our catering web site.

If you have any specific questions, I invite you to e-mail me at or call our office at 616-395-7930. We would be happy to assist you in any way. Hope College is an exceptional place to receive a high quality education, participate in co-curricular activities, strengthen your faith and live in community with your classmates and friends.

Pay us a visit, we would be happy to show you around.

Bob Van Heukelom
Director of Dining Services